Life is a highway

Life is a highway

This issue, we talk to four corporate road warriors who are on the road as much — or more — than they are at home. Here’s how they survive jet lag, foreign food and sleep deprivation.

goodtimes-mikewaltonMike Walton
VP Sales & Marketing, Lantic Inc.
Lives in Quispamsis, N.B.; job is based in Toronto
Away from home approximately 250 nights/year

Favourite hotel?
I almost exclusively stay in Marriott properties, they generally have a great product and you can find one just about anywhere in the world. The Marriott travel reward program is one of the best in the business and when you check into a Marriott they recognize you right away as a valued customer. They consistently live up to their brand promise.

Missing my family and friends is the biggest drawback to extensive travel. Time zones and long travel days can make staying connected dišcult at times. Thank goodness for SKYPE! It’s important to get enough rest on the road so that when you do get home you are connecting with family and friends and not just sleeping.

Travel tips?
I survive on an average of four to five hours of sleep a night. I generally plan my flights so that I am on the first flight out in the AM. As a result I have many very early mornings which are generally always followed by late evenings.

Food is always a challenge. I am a meat and potatoes guy, a true Maritimer. I’ve eaten in some of the nicest restaurants in the world, but if I have a choice, I will take a BBQ’d steak at home with Angela and my boys any day.

“If not for the tremendous support and understanding of your spouse and family the travel, time away from home would not be possible. They are the ones who truly carry the extra load to keep everything together.”
– Mike Walton

goodtimes-kendramacdonaldKendra MacDonald
Deloitte Atlantic Innovation and Enterprise Risk Marketplace Leader
Travels 70-90 days a year on average, although 2015 was 100+

Favourite hotel?
My favourite is currently the Marriott … it is the closest hotel chain to our ošces in Montreal and Halifax and the experience is consistent.

Definitely, especially if I am missing something important like a recital, concert, etc… (although I try to minimize this), but I miss the little things too. We are innovative in how we stay connected. My daughter loves to record videos, my stepson is improving his texting skills and sometimes my family meets me somewhere to do things like ski, swim, go to a show or visit friends and extended family which makes it more fun for them.

Travel tips?
The biggest challenge is maintaining health and personal wellness. The flights to and from St. John’s are generally early in the morning or late at night and there is always the risk that you won’t make it — although with the new CAT III landing equipment at the airport, this should happen less! This travel schedule leaves little time for exercise and I am often grabbing food on the go. One of the main ways that I manage it is self-forgiveness: I can’t be everywhere, I can’t do everything and sometimes eating, sleeping and exercise do need to be a priority. As women, we set a very high bar for ourselves and our ability to do everything, I TRY to let that go!

goodtimes-brendanpaddickBrendan Paddick
chairman, Columbus Capital Corp.
Travels average of 150-200 days/year (257 in 2015). Answered interview questions from — where else — a plane.

Favourite hotel?
I try to stay at Starwood properties. They have the best loyalty program that covers a host of great brands such as Westin, Sheraton, Meridien and W Hotels. In fact, I am a Starwood Platinum for Life member with over 1,000 nights under my belt. It’s my home away from home.

The downside?
Of course the obvious answer is the time away from family and missing so many ‘firsts’ and ‘lasts’. But in all honesty, traveling led to the growth of our business which in turn led to many terrific opportunities and experiences. I don’t have many regrets at all.

Travel tips?
I have a bigger challenge sleeping at home. It got so bad that my wife and I actually ordered the complete Heavenly Bed from Westin Hotels (i.e the mattress, mattress pad, feather bed, duvet, sheets, pillows…you name it) for our house. We bought the double Heavenly shower head too. True story!

goodtimes-barbstegmanBarb Stegemann
Author, motivational speaker and social entrepreneur; Founder & CEO, The 7 Virtues Based in Halifax, N.S.
Travels 70-90 days/year

Favourite hotel?
Fairmont. You collect points and earn free nights, meals, discounts, upgrades. Regardless of the chain you go with, it’s important to try and stick with one major hotel, one major airline. The rewards pay off.

I am blessed that I work with my husband and son so there is often a family member with me. Even my daughter will come to one of my talks in another city and help me, so I am often with my family. Because it would bother me if I had to be away from them that much.

Travel tips?
I like to use natural products, so the biggest challenge is when I forget something. I use coconut oil to wash my face to help with my hereditary Irish Rosacea skin. When you forget something like coconut oil, you are hard pressed to find it in the hotel store. So I try to really pack everything.

I ensure I sleep eight hours every night. I use an eye patch to keep the light out and I only wake up when my body is rested. No alarms. I pack all of my natural foods from apples to green tea, flax and oatmeal.I skip the bread, the wine and eating in restaurants as much as possible and try and get a fridge in my room for healthy foods. If there is a pool I swim every morning and I do my yoga in my room with my portable yoga mat.

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